Flying the Lufthansa A350
Lufthansa took delivery of their first A350-900 in 2016, three years after their initial order. They currently have fifteen A350-900s in their Munich based fleet and fly them mainly across North America, Asia, and the Middle East. The A350 was designed by Airbus in order to be a more fuel-efficient wide-body aircraft to fulfill the demands of extremely long-haul routes. There are three different seating sections on Lufthansa’s A350s: Business, Premium Economy, and Economy. Business seats are in a 2-2-2 configuration and are all lie flats. Premium Economy seats are in a 2-3-2 configuration, and Economy is in a 3-3-3 configuration. I was lucky enough to experience this new aircraft fist hand in January of 2018. Since then, Lufthansa has begun flying the A350 to more and more cities such as Charlotte, NC, Boston, MA, and Montreal, QB.
I actually ended up flying on Lufthansa’s A350-900 by chance. My family and I were headed to Germany for a trip and were scheduled to fly on United. As you know, the weather can play a significant role in flights, especially during the winter, and our first leg suffered a five-hour delay due to this, which caused us to miss our initial flight to Munich, Germany. Thankfully, a very patient gate agent at the Dane County Regional Airport in Madison, Wisconsin was able to reroute us onto the later flight with Lufthansa through Newark. Most people dread having to switch planes and flights as they have their itinerary set up perfectly in their head, and even though I am an avgeek, I can feel the same at times. However, once I learned that we had been switched to an A350, my frustration quickly melted away. The weather in Madison was so bad this day it nearly caused us to miss the A350 flight as well, but we made it just in time.
Our flight that day was Lufthansa flight 413 on an A350-900 registered D-AIXJ. It was my first time seeing an A350 in person, first time seeing a Lufthansa aircraft in its new livery, and the first time flying on an A350, the grand trifecta. The gate agents in Newark were very good about the boarding process and got the plane filled very swiftly. I was seated in seat 26A, and even though the cabin was outstanding in many ways, I would not recommend this seat because it was directly in front of the bulkhead, making reclining nearly impossible, and the cabin was quite warm throughout the flight. Now that we have had our vegetables, we can move onto the desserts and talk about the outstanding and enjoyable features of this aircraft. The first thing I noticed was how quiet the engines were inflight. I could hardly tell take off power had been applied from the sound of the engines as we began rolling down the runway. The gentle hum was very calming throughout the flight. Each seat was equipped with IFE and a very nice selection of movies and shows. My favorite part about the IFE on the A350 was the camera on the tail and belly of the plane that could be viewed right from my seat. The crew on this flight were very kind and friendly. They were all-around excellent. The food served was delicious. The cabin crew offered drink services with our meal as well as two other times throughout the flight. A snack service was also provided shortly after takeoff. Roughly an hour before arrival, the flight attendants served breakfast. Sadly, I cannot remember at this moment in time what I had for breakfast, but I remember it being rather tasty.
A short seven hours later and we touched down in Munich, Germany. The pilots absolutely greased the landing making for another enjoyable memory from the flight. I would have to give my experience on this flight four out of five stars. The slightly uncomfortable seats due to the location on the aircraft and warm temperature made it hard to sleep, causing me to give them four stars. I am genuinely grateful for the experience, however, and would gladly fly the A350-900 with Lufthansa again. Thank you for reading, and I hope you enjoyed it.
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